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The average lifetime costs of an SCI

On Behalf of | Jan 25, 2022 | Personal Injury |

Spinal cord injuries are catastrophic results that may occur from benign sources. Many might picture a serious motor vehicle accident when thinking about encounters that risk that sort of damage. These people are right in that motor vehicle accidents are the top cause of SCIs, but slips and falls are a close second.

Unfortunately, medical science has yet to devise a cure for the kinds of paralysis that SCIs risk. This means that anyone who sustains an SCI may have a whole lifetime of costs ahead of them to live with one.

Costs based on severity

As the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center details, the health care costs and living expenses of an SCI vary depending on the extent of paralysis. The lifetime costs of an injury resulting in a minor loss of motor function do not cost the same amount as one resulting in full-body paralysis.

Costs based on age

As younger individuals with SCIs may live longer than older individuals, the NSCISC provides these estimated lifetime costs:

  • Motor functional loss: $1,704,144 for 25 year olds vs $1,202,832 for 50 year olds
  • Paraplegia: $2,494,144 for 25 year olds vs $1,636,959 for 50 year olds
  • High tetraplegia: $5,100,941 for 25 year olds vs $2,803,391 for 50 year olds

Other costs

On top of physical and financial costs, the Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center reports that 1 in 5 individuals in the SCI population experience depression versus the estimated 1 in 20 for the American population.

While these figures may seem overwhelming, it is important to understand the numbers when arranging a case for damages or when fighting insurance companies cover the cost of the care that SCI victims need.